I remember Mom telling me how thoroughly annoyed she was (at 5 or 6) with Aunt Irene when she showed up on the scene and took away her beloved Uncle Clarence. But then, Mom said, she got to know her and also fell madly in love with Aunt Irene- a love that lasted the rest of her life. My parents both loved Aunt Irene and Uncle Clarence and I can see why, they were both lovely people. Uncle Clarence died when I was fairly young, but I remember him as a man who loved to make people laugh. We were fortunate enough to borrow “Chubby” for a while when I was about 4 so that I could learn to ride. One time I was in the field with Uncle Clarence and Chubby came over looking for attention. Uncle Clarence held his head and said to me “you see this big bump on his nose? Well that means his nose is out of joint because he’s not getting enough attention. It’s very important that you spend time petting his nose every day” and he laughed and laughed, and damned if I didn’t have to spend the rest of the summer petting his nose just in case he wasn’t teasing me.
Frank pulled out of the CL outfit in 1944. Percy and Clarence missed him because it is always cheaper to run a big outfit than a small one. You used almost the same number of men and the same machinery. But they still worked together for some of the big jobs. When the war was over in 1945, we quit raising hogs because the income tax slapped on us then took all the profit. By now we were able to contract a lot of our haying to farmers who were glad to do it while their crops grew all summer. This took considerable of the stress of cooking off my shoulders as they would look after themselves, usually camping right in the field.
Clarence got married to Irene Robertson in 1946 and the ranch was divided and we were on our own. We missed Clarence a lot, the children did especially, but he wasn’t far away and we could visit often.
Percy got Griffin Bros to come in with their huge machinery and clear brush off some of his land. This was sort of a pioneer project in our part of the country. The cost was drastic and so was the job of picking roots for years afterwards. But he has grown some wonderful crops on that land.
I stopped making butter and took the cream and eggs to “Swifts” in Calgary and often bought bread instead of baking it so often. We still had several steady men working for us and living in the bunkhouse. All through the years we made the most delicious homemade ice cream with the plentiful supply of cream we always had on hand. Sunday mornings the boys would take turns cranking the ice cream freezer. Every Sunday morning we had really good buttermilk pancakes for breakfast too, such mounds of them with Roger’s Syrup. When roads were passable I would go to church in Cochrane taking the children to Sunday School and taught Sunday School for many years.